Being Comfortable In The Skin You’re In

I was thinking the other day about my youth. Like many, growing up can be a hard part of life depending on the circumstances you have to deal with. For much of my own, I did not have my father because he died when I was young. Many of the things I had to deal with, I had to do so without him to guide me through them. Whether it was dealing with a chronic illness like Sickle Cell Anemia, or being small, or skinny, underweight, or any number of the things that I felt made it difficult to fit into the groups that people establish, I was without my father to help me navigate those troubled waters.

Français : Romane Bohringer et Aïssa Maïga au ...

Français : Romane Bohringer et Aïssa Maïga au festival de Deauville 2009 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Suffice it to say, I think I did quite well in spite of it all. However, there are many that are growing up today who don’t fare as well as I was able to do. The day and time in which we live do not cater to making the transition from childhood to adulthood easy. Whether you’re thin, fat, short or tall, fair skinned, light or dark as night, there are so many things that make it difficult for people to feel comfortable in their own skin. Some things you just can’t change about yourself. You have to resolve to either embrace that difference about yourself or you’ll just spend your entire life miserable. I can’t change my ethnicity, skin color, height, or the fact that I was born with a chronic illness.

In recent years there has been an increase in companies and various organizations to counter the damage that has been done to create many of the problems that young people face with not being comfortable in their own skin. From Dove who has made it a priority to let girls and young women know that women don’t come “one-size-fits-all,” to the many other groups and organizations that are dedicated to ensuring people know that there is no singularly superior shade of human, each are playing a dynamic role in fostering healthy self-esteems and psyches.

The greatest thing that can be done, more than any outside influencer, is to have parents and family that will not fall into the trap of stereotyping and degrading their own children. It’s hard enough when the outside world comes against you, but the one place you should be safe from all of the hurtful and spiteful things that get said about you or done to you should be within the confines of your own home. It is supposed to be a sanctuary and refuge.

If you have managed to make it to adulthood and still find it difficult to be comfortable in your own skin, don’t fret. You can still get there. Find those things that you do love about yourself and play them up. Find people who have a strong sense of self and won’t make an issue of the things you are self-conscious of. The people who matter the most are the ones who accept you as you are, not the ones who try to limit you and confine your greatness to their own preconceived ideas of what it looks like or how it should come packaged.

Let’s ensure that the generations that follow us don’t face the pitfalls we did. We know the pains. If we have overcome, we are now guides along the life journey who can help others traverse the deep waters and trails we stumbled through. It’s the things that make us different that make us unique. Just as no two people have the same fingerprints, it is those traits that make us different which give us perspectives and a flair to stand proud as peacocks.

QUESTION: What are some ways that you have become comfortable in your own skin, that you can now use to help someone else to feel comfortable in theirs?

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